Some people become very upset if they do not have a chance to read that day’s newspaper. They can ask themselves, “What am I actually missing if I haven’t read today’s newspaper?”
A distinguished Rosh Hayeshiva once asked someone who spent hundreds of hours a year reading newspapers, “Please tell me everything you’ve learned this year from your newspaper reading.” The person spoke for about five minutes. When prodded for more, the fellow was able to come up with about ten minutes worth of information.
The Rosh Hayeshiva told him this should serve as a lesson for weighing the value of how much he gained from the expenditure of his time. ~ ~ R’ Zelig Pliskin
This is true that we need to be careful with our time and newspaper or news feeds today at so full or non-curated, baseless or frivolous elements that it is often a big waste of time. However, the last Lubavitch Rebbe himself, O.B.M., was said to read several newspaper every morning. He was a genius and obviously was reading much faster than we would and maybe was able to grasp all the essence without reading word by word. Nonetheless, part of his acute and encyclopaedic understanding of nearly every topic was certainly enhanced and maintained by a constant flow of new info from Kodesh and profane sources.
Maimonides was one of the great physicians of his time and most of the great Rabannim had knowledge on many fields.
Without doubt, learning Torah must be the priority and take the most of our focus. But we need to learn things about the World that surrounds us in order to make sure that the answers to challenges is in tune with the major issues of this World (ethics of genetics, AI, biotechs, FoodTech, etc…).